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Un-complicating Healthcare IT

The Need For Healthcare IT Security Continues to Grow

Jul 21, 2016 12:25:00 PM Posted by Jim Tufts | Leadership Solutions Team Lead

security-des-moines-business-record_7.20.jpgHealthcare organizations are far more likely to experience a data breach today than they were a few years ago. The increase of connectivity and malicious creativity in the past few years has lead to this great surge in threats to healthcare organizations.

Jim Tufts, leadership solutions team lead, and Phil Stravers, partner and vice president of strategy and development at ICE Technologies, talk about this threat in this recent Des Moines Business Record article. This article focuses on the big cybersecurity threats hospitals and healthcare organizations are now facing.

There is much for a healthcare organization to lose if they were to be a victim of a data breach but the most important loss would be a loss of patient trust. When a healthcare organization has a breach, it is often patient information that has been breached, causing the patient to wonder if his/her information is really being kept secure and cared for by their provider.  

“In healthcare you’re dealing with Social Security numbers, health data and addresses. Because of that value, healthcare has become a target,” said Tufts.

Protecting patients and providing them with the best care possible is a top goal for any healthcare organization. How could you reach that goal if you don’t have the proper cybersecurity in place to protect them from the loss of their information in a cyberattack?

Since 2009, 1/3 of Americans have fallen victim to at least one healthcare breach. So, the continued need for strong security is on a steady rise. Individual awareness and proper training of employees on this issue has also become critical because human error is one of the leading causes of data breaches. It is through employees where many viruses or malware often enter into the system.

“Most of the time it’s through an attachment in an email,” said Tufts. “It’s just keeping people vigilant; is this something I was expecting to get from a colleague? We see a lot of cases where there is a fair amount of training on email, but when you do a mock phishing email, 50 to 60 percent fall for that.”

ICE recognizes this need for security and understands the new strains of ransomware that threatens to hold systems hostage have substantially increased healthcare organizations’ sensitivity to security. “We see a heightened interest in getting their vulnerabilities identified and plugging holes,” said Stravers.

From backup, archiving and recovery planning, to risk-mitigation consulting, to proactively defending your perimeter and endpoints, we’re helping healthcare organizations future proof against internal and external threats. Learn more about protecting your organization before it is too late. 

Read the full article that Jim Tufts and Phil Stravers were featured in on the Des Moines Business Record website. Limited visibility to the article may be due to the Des Moines Business Record’s membership policy.


Jim Tufts | Leadership Solutions Team Lead

Jim, along with the Leadership Solutions team, leads, guides healthcare providers, in user education, consulting, process improvement, disaster recovery planning, strategic IT planning and more. Jim is the author of the whitepaper, “Guide to the HIPAA Security Rule,” and is often found in healthcare association meetings, national conferences, or in a healthcare board room educating on protecting electronic patient health information.